Recently, I stumbled across a poetry anthology on Amazon, which I am anxious to read.
Solace in So Many Words, edited by Ellen Wade Beals.
It is exactly what I am looking for. I love collections of poems that soothe the heart, mind and soul. It looks very promising. I added it to my long to be read list, but I hope to order it soon. When I do, I will share a few of my favorite poems with you, if possible. I prefer poems that are full of faith, hope and love and give insight into living a meaningful existence. Poems that console in times of trial and poems that uplift in times of gladness.
Lately, I’ve been drawn to several women poets that have a tendency to write about their personal experiences and home and love and family, along with their faith that brings out their emotional life. I am sure everyone has their own reasons for reading and studying certain poets, depending on themes or the times of our lives.
After looking over all the poems and poets I have read over the years, it was hard to decide my top ten favorite women poets, but I finally narrowed my long list down to the following ten women poets (in no particular order).
• Sara Teasdale (1884–1933)
• Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)
• Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)
• Georgia Douglas Johnson (1877-1966)
• Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1850-1919)
• Grace Paley (1922–2007)
• Jane Kenyon (1947–1995)
• Lucille Clifton (1936-2010)
• Natasha Trethewey
• Carol Allis
These are poets that I love reading and I would especially love to own a private collection of their poetry books. Their words fill me goodness and their books are a hidden treasure.
“Poetry is the emotional history of the world.” ~ Peter Meinke, Florida Poet Laureate
Continue reading What draws you to Poetry?
“My personal hobbies are reading, listening to music, and silence.” ~ Edith Sitwell (1887–1964)
“Poetry is an attempt to capture the essence of the chord struck in the poet by an instant of insight, in such a way that the same music will sound in the soul of the reader.” ~ Tia Azulay
Part In Peace: Is Day Before Us?
Sarah Flower Adams, 1805-1848
Part in peace: is day before us?
Praise His Name for life and light;
Are the shadows lengthening o’er us?
Bless His care Who guards the night.
Part in peace: with deep thanksgiving,
Rendering, as we homeward tread,
Gracious service to the living,
Tranquil memory to the dead.
Part in peace: such are the praises
God our Maker loveth best;
Such the worship that upraises
Human hearts to heavenly rest.
Emily Pauline Johnson, 1861-1913
A thin wet sky, that yellows at the rim,
And meets with sun-lost lip the marsh’s brim.
The pools low lying, dank with moss and mould,
Glint through their mildews like large cups of gold.
Among the wild rice in the still lagoon,
In monotone the lizard shrills his tune.
The wild goose, homing, seeks a sheltering,
Where rushes grow, and oozing lichens cling.
Late cranes with heavy wing, and lazy flight,
Sail up the silence with the nearing night.
And like a spirit, swathed in some soft veil,
Steals twilight and its shadows o’er the swale.
Hushed lie the sedges, and the vapours creep,
Thick, grey and humid, while the marshes sleep.
[From She Wields a Pen: American Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century (University of Iowa Press, 1997)]
*Note: I learned about this poet from the poetry site, Troubles of the World.
Katherine Mansfield, 1888-1923
These be two
What a size!
Grand big arms
And round red faces;
Great big bosoms firm as cheese
Bursting through their country jackets;
Wide big laps
And sturdy knees;
Round and rosy,
Hands to hold
A country posy
Or a baby or a lamb—
And such eyes!
Stupid, shifty, small and sly
Peeping through a slit of sty,
Squinting through their neighbours’ plackets.
*Art: Good Neighbors by Johannes Christiaan Janson (1780-1810)
Beside Still Waters
Lisa Anne Fletcher, 1844-1905
As oft beside a quiet shoal
The violet flower we find,
So by still waters of the soul,
The blossoms of the mind.
Yet life hath set a silent seal,
To springs of deepest thought,
And words but only half reveal
The blossoms that we sought
*Note: This is one of those antique poetry books that is a real treasure. This book written by Christian poet and artist, Lisa Anne Fletcher (1844-1905), is full of gems on life, beauty, nature and love. This is exactly why I love to read obscure poets from long ago. I originally learned about her while reading A Woman of the Century, 1893. To read Beside Still Waters online, click here.